Yesterday we held our annual family reunion. We've been doing this every year for the past 20 or 25 years on the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Initially, we had it on Thanksgiving, but decided to avoid traveling on the most heavily travelled weekend of the year. Numbers of attendees have steadily increased over the years and now include extended family as well.
This year about 58 attended and we held it at a retirement community (an Erickson community) my mother just entered -- brand new -- in fact we were their first party. The food was fantastic and they worked so very hard to accomodate us. I come away from these visits feeling so lucky to have a wonderful family, people who really care and who are so welcoming and accepting. A friend says she thinks it's because we're Italian, but I'm not so sure. What I am sure of is how important keeping contact with family is. I've spoken with many students who express feelings of being disenfranchised and loneliness. Invariably, they have little contact with immediate family yet alone extended family. Their parents work hard and the kids are on their own most of the time. I see how my own children respond to the sense of family, a sense of belonging to a 'clan.' I listen to them relate stories of reunions past -- our collective memories -- to the youngest family members and I feel good.
- I am a retired English teacher and department head, the mother of three, grand mother of three, and have been married to the same man for 42 years. I subscribe to Dr. PM Forni's concept of Civility. I was born in South Philadelphia and grew up in the 'burbs. I love soft pretzels and cheesesteaks, the Phillies, the Eagles, and San Diego. I love being Mom, Aunt Kathy, Nona Kathy, and Teacher. I spend a lot of time in my gardens in the spring and summer, and in the winter I plan what I'm going to plant. I also am an avid reader and photographer.